BREAKING: Utes Land Oklahoma Transfer RB Pledger
The University of Utah got some much needed news on Monday with the commitment of Oklahoma transfer running back, TJ Pledger. The 5-foot-9 194 pound back was the no. 70 overall rated recruit by Rivals in 2018 and the no. 5 running back with a 6.0 rating.
Previously used in a reserve role behind some other talented running backs, he had a good opportunity to compete for the Sooners’ starting role in 2021, but instead chose to enter his name in the NCAA Transfer Portal. Pledger also excelled as a return man.
The elephant in the room that has been so painful to address is what the Utes would do after the tragic passing of star Ty Jordan. Both Jordan Wilmore and Devin Brumfield hit the portal a week before Utah’s final game in 2020, leaving Micah Bernard as the only returning scholarship back, until Pledger’s commitment.
The Utes had been primed to be the Pac-12 South favorite for 2021, but Jordan’s passing flipped that on its head. The addition of a dynamic running back like Pledger gives the Utes the depth they so suddenly needed and someone who could be a dangerous threat along with an emerging playmaker in Bernard.
Pledger has a Utah connection with quarterback Cam Rising, as the two were teammates in the 7 on 7 circuit for years.
For his career, Pledger has 135 carries for 695 yards, for a 5.1 average and six touchdowns. Now that he’s out of the shadows of Trey Sermon and Rhamondre Stevenson, the hope is that Pledger can explode onto the scene with a fresh start and bigger role.
Suddenly the Utah running back room is stable again, as they got one of the best options at the position on the transfer market. If the opportunity presents itself, they could still add one more to the group.